Say hello to your new favorite dessert! This cake has two layers of moist, fluffy pumpkin cake that is perfectly spiced, and is filling and frosted with a silky cream cheese frosting. It's the ultimate fall dessert.
INGREDIENTS FOR PUMPKIN CAKE
• All-purpose flour
• Baking powder + baking soda
• Pumpkin puree
• Vegetable oil
• Granulated + light brown sugar
• Vanilla extract
MAKING THE CAKE LAYERS
To begin, add the dry ingredients in a large bowl. This is going to be the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and salt. Whisk until combined. In a separate bowl, combine the rest of the cake ingredients; this will be the pumpkin puree, granulated sugar, light brown sugar, vegetable oil, eggs, vanilla extract, and milk. Soup the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients. Whisk everything together just until the batter forms. Be careful not to over mix!
For this recipe, you'll need 2- 8" round cake pans. Grease them and line the bottoms with parchment paper. Pour the cake batter equally between the two pans. Pop into a preheated 350°F oven and bake the layers for 27-30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Once the cake layers are done baking, allow them to cool completely. *Let the cakes cool in the pans for about 10 minutes, then transfer them to a cooling rack to finish cooling completely.
INGREDIENTS FOR CREAM CHEESE FROSTING
Now it's time to make the cream cheese frosting. This is going to go on the inside of the cake, as well as the entire outside. It's super simple to whip up, and you only need a handful of ingredients! Here's everything you need to make it:
• Unsalted butter
• Cream cheese
• Powdered sugar
• Vanilla extract
MAKING THE CREAM CHEESE FROSTING
To make the cream cheese frosting, start by creaming together the cream cheese and softened unsalted butter for 2 full minutes. Next, mix in the vanilla extract, cinnamon, and pinch of salt. Add in the powdered sugar about a few cups at a time. Once everything is added and mixed, beat the frosting again for another 2 minutes. If you want the frosting to be slightly thinner, you can add a splash of heavy cream. If you want it stiffer, add a bit more powdered sugar.
ASSEMBLING THE CAKE
There are just a few steps required to fully assemble this pumpkin cake. Here's what you do:
STEP 1: Cut and trim the tops of all three cake layers so they're flat.
STEP 2: Place the first cake layer down on the cake plate. Spread about 1 cup of cream cheese frosting into an even layer on top of the cake layer.
STEP 3: Place the second cake layer on top. Frost the outside and sides evenly with cream cheese frosting. That's it! You can leave it as is, or you can top it with sprinkles, crushed pumpkin spice cookies, or even caramel sauce.
TIPS FOR THE BEST PUMPKIN CAKE
♦ Be sure to use pumpkin puree, not pumpkin pie filling. I know this sounds silly, but it could be easy to mix up. Be sure you're using 100% pure pumpkin puree.
♦ Don't over bake the cakes. Over baking the cakes can make them dry. Be sure to test them with a toothpick-- if it comes out clean, they are done baking. Let them cool in the pans for about 10 minutes, then transfer them to a cooling rack.
♦ Cool your cakes completely. This one is very important. If your cakes are even remotely still warm after being baked, the frosting may melt and you will be left with a big cake mess.
♦ Add powdered sugar or chill for sturdier frosting. Cream cheese frostings can sometimes be a little softer than others. It could be the butter and cream cheese were too warm,
If you give this recipe a try and love it, be sure to leave a comment and star rating! Be sure to tag @thehungrykitchenblog on Instagram so I can see all of your delicious bakes! Happy baking! ♥
The Best Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
- 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ¾ teapoon salt
- 3 tablespoon cinnamon
- 2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon ginger
- ¼ teaspoon clove (optional)
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup light brown sugar, packed
- 2 eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ cup milk
Cream Cheese Frosting
- ¾ cup unsalted butter, softened (1.5 sticks)
- 8 oz cream cheese, softened
- 6 cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Pinch of salt
Making the Cakes
- Preheat your oven to 350°F. Grease 2- 8" round cake pans and line the bottoms with parchment paper, if desired. Set them aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and salt.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the rest of the cake ingredients- this will be the pumpkin puree, granulated sugar, light brown sugar, vegetable oil, eggs, vanilla extract, and milk.
- Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl wth the dry ingredeints. Whisk everything together just until the batter forms.
- Pour batter evenly between the two prepared cake pans. Bake the cakes for 27-30 minutes. Allow the cakes to cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then transfer them to a cooling rack to finish cooling completely.
Making the Frosting
- To make the cream cheese frosting, beat the softened butter and softened cream cheese on medium speen until smooth and fluffy; about 1-2 minutes. Then, add in the vanilla extract, cinnamon, and pinch of salt.
- Mix in the powdered sugar about a few cups at a time. Once all added, beat the frosting again on medium speed for another 2 minutes until light and fluffy*.
Assembling the Cake
- Cut and trim the tops of all three cake layers so they're flat. Place the first cake layer down on the cake plate. Spread about ¾-1 cup of cream cheese frosting into an even layer on top of the cake layer.
- Place the second cake layer on top. Frost the outside and sides evenly with the remaining cream cheese frosting. Enjoy!